“Why not bring back a strange, powerful hand to solve all our problems?”
It always starts with a box.
But this time, it’s important. At least, that’s what people tell themselves, just before they pop the lock and open the lid. This time, the wolf is at the door, the bad guy is getting away, the emperor refuses to surrender. I have no choice, they say. It’s really important.
And when they say it’s important, what they mean is I’m important. As in, more important than whoever gets hurt. I am important enough to flip this switch, to drop this bomb, to use this power which no one should wield. I am more important than you, and here’s the proof: this hell I’m unleashing.
Continue reading Episode 778: Pocket Full of Kryptonite
“Life was more exciting, when I was around.”
So, the lesson, I suppose, is that you shouldn’t lock up your relatives, build paneling over the door, and pretend that they went to France.
I mean, I understand the impulse. Quentin is selfish and mean, and practices dark sorcery. You’ve tried to kick him out of the house, but he just laughs, and keeps on drinking other people’s brandy. And then there’s a sale at Home Depot, and you think, This could be so easy…
The downside, of course, is that then your descendants come along and unseal the tomb, because they’re young and curious, and you forgot to write “Dangerous ancestor, do not open” on the entrance portal. Although they probably wouldn’t have paid attention anyway; descendants are dumb like that.
Continue reading Episode 701: The Most Important Thing About Quentin
“I was hoping you’d say it was just a wild coincidence.”
Barnabas Collins has driven a stake through a vampire’s heart, beaten a werewolf into submission with his cane, bricked up an enemy behind a wall, and burned a witch to death with a torch, and Dr. Julia Hoffman has done everything that Barnabas did, except backwards and in high heels.
So you’d imagine that these two heavyweights would have no problem dealing with an awkward social situation, like if a guy shows up at your friend’s house in the middle of the night, and you can’t get him to leave. And yet here they are, stymied. Us Weekly was right; celebrities really are just like us.
Continue reading Episode 688: Mostly Charmless
“I summon you in the name of the charred and blackened stars that reigned at my beginnings!”
Angelique has had enough. She lights a candle.
Prince of Fire, she says, I call upon the flame to summon you. I call up all the dark creatures of nature to summon you here to me.
I summon you in the name of the seven plagues, in the name of the charred and blackened stars that reigned at my beginnings, to rise out of the darkness of the earth!
I call you forth from the mouth of the dragon, and of the beast, and of the false prophet! I call you forth from the subterranean rivers of blood, from the smoke of torment which rises forever and ever!
In the name of every evil spirit — evil, and obedient only to you — I invoke you! Appear to me NOW!
And then she erupts into a furnace of psychedelic Chromakey flames, screaming and pleading for her life.
This is Wednesday, by the way. This is what we do on Wednesdays now.
Continue reading Episode 628: Horrible Bosses
“I would have thought your thoughts? I find that hard to believe; I can’t even understand you now.”
Barnabas Collins paces around the room, and tries to explain.
“I’ve considered the question of who is to be the life force very carefully,” he says, “and I’ve finally decided on Maggie Evans.”
He pauses for a reaction, but the six-foot-six reanimated Frankenstein who Barnabas is addressing doesn’t even bother to look up. He just sits there, and continues to play solitaire.
Now, I know that new people discover this blog all the time, and every post is probably the first time for someone out there, so near the beginning of every entry, I try to provide some kind of brief previously-on-Dark-Shadows recap so that newcomers have a fighting chance of understanding what the hell is going on.
But, dear newbie, there are days when the kindest service I can render is to direct your attention to the boxes in the sidebar to your immediate right, and suggest that you help yourself to any of the previous three hundred and eighty-one posts instead, because today is the day when I honestly just can’t even with this.
Continue reading Episode 587: In Which I Just Can’t Even With This
“The thought of what he might be frightens me as much as it did you.”
Well, there are books here, that’s something that I know. There are books on shelves, and they’re dusty, so this is probably an interior set. That’s a place to start.
The walls are made of stone, with big stone columns, and there are plaques on the wall that look like gravestones. Lots of cobwebs, naturally. Very dark, very shadowy.
There’s an old man with glasses who’s carrying a book. He shuffles over to the wall with the gravestones, peers at them, and then looks at all of the other walls, as if he suspects they might be up to something. Then he shuffles over to the bookshelves, and puts down the book that he’s holding.
I’m trying to describe this scene for you in as much detail as I can, because we’re currently one minute into this episode, and I have absolutely no idea what we’re looking at.
Continue reading Episode 337: Time to Kill
“You know something, doctor? I’ve just decided that I don’t believe you.”
Today on Dark Shadows, we learn what a rich kid does on his day off — he rides on a bus. Carolyn is taking David on a trip into Bangor, and he’s got his heart set on that bus trip. But their plans are interrupted by a visit from Sam and Joe, who have something to discuss with David.
You can tell that it’s important, because Sam uses Dramatic Clarification — a technique where you pretend that you’re being super focused and intense, when really you’re just saying the same thing twice.
So when David asks why Sam needs to talk to him, Sam says, “Well, it’s about something urgent. Something very, very urgent.”
Continue reading Episode 308: In Circles
“He’s some kind of a creature from the world of the dead!”
We pick up today at a pivotal plot point, as Maggie Evans — vampire abduction survivor and mental health facility refugee — stumbles into the Blue Whale, looks at Barnabas, and collapses onto the floor.
This comes as something of a shock to the Collinsport nightlife community, and especially to Barnabas, because he knows that at any moment she could expose him, and then…
Hold on, wait. Has that woman been wearing that orange dress this whole time?
Continue reading Episode 295: Nothing But Lies
“I suppose I’m exaggerating. But then again… maybe I’m not.”
At the top of today’s episode, we’ve got Barnabas sneaking up on a sleeping Vicki as she spends a not particularly peaceful night in Josette’s room. He’s got his fangs in this time, so he’s ready for action.
But then, from the corner of his eye, he notices Josette’s portrait, staring at him. He’s basically making a move on his new girlfriend while his ex is calmly sitting there and watching. It’s an awkward moment for everyone — even for Vicki, and she’s sound asleep.
Embarrassed and sheepish, Barnabas backs away from Vicki and exits the room. It’s a nice character-building moment for Barnabas, but unfortunately it makes the story less interesting. If he’s not going to bite her, then we don’t have a plot anymore. So now what?
Continue reading Episode 287: Notes on Camp
“It’s hard to believe that a few hours ago you were collapsing all over the place.”
It’s sunset at Collinwood, and Willie’s out of bed. Jason enters the sickroom and finds Willie putting on his shoes, and here we go again.
Come on, guys, hurry it up! There’s a good story here, just waiting to be told. All we need is for Barnabas to stay away from the livestock for five minutes and start paying attention to the humans. But not today, apparently.
Continue reading Episode 220: Never Drink Wine